Chhattisgarh water resources minister Ravindra Choubey on Tuesday said central government should resolve river water disputes between states at the earliest through mutual consensus.
He was addressing the meeting of states’ water resources, drinking water and public health engineering ministers chaired by Jal Shakti minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat at New Delhi.
It was Choubey’s first high-level meeting after recovery from recent cardiac arrest.
Ministry of Jal Shakti had hosted the event in view of looming drought in different parts of the country and alarming drop in water levels in reservoirs across India.
The meeting discussed issues of water conservation, drinking water and sanitation.
Choubey said available water resources remain unutilized and irrigation projects are in limbo due to river water sharing disputes among several states.
Supported by other state ministers, he said approaching the water tribunal for dispute resolution is taxing as it takes years to resolve it.
State water resources minister highlighted the Chhattisgarh’s flagship scheme of ‘Narva Garva, Ghurva aur Baadi’ where small rivers and rivulets are being utilized at village level for water conservation and ground water recharging.
Within the limits of state budget, the target of 2 lakh hectare irrigation facilities has been made. He called for better state-centre coordination in water conservation schemes for better results.
Public Health engineering department Minister Guru Rudra Kumar said through Minimata Amritdhara scheme free drinking water connection to each house of BPL families will be provided.
Central government has a similar scheme so with the coordination and assistance the target can be achieved at the earliest. He also raised issue of fluoride and iron content in ground water in several villages.